Sunday, 17 November 2013

Soup Sunday: laksa

As the days get greyer and the germs even more resilient this soup becomes a fixture in my kitchen, every year. This is also one of The Gentleman's all time favourites in my repertoir. This will keep that flue at bay!

Serves 4

3 lemon grass stems
1-2 chillis
3 large garlic cloves
7 dl water
1 vegetable stock cube
5 cm piece of ginger
3 kaffir lime leaves (or small bay leaves)
1 can coconut milk
1/2 dl fish sauce
1/4 dl soy sauce
1/4 dl brown sugar (or palm sugar)
2 carrots
150 g mangetout
60 g pack of noodles
50 g shiitake mushrooms

to serve: fresh coriander leaves, spring onions, lime wedges

First make the stock. This gets the flavours out of lemongrass and such without you having to spit them out later on in that dreadfully unladylike fashion (yes, a lady swallows.) Measure the stock, finely sliced ginger, chilli, garlic and kaffir lime leaves and lemongrass into the pot. Cut about 10 cm piece of the lemongrass (the root end) and cut it in half and bash it a couple of times with the coconut milk can. This gets the flavours going! Let simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Then run it through a sieve, return to the pot and add fish sauce, soy sauce and sugar. The add the veggies and mushrooms, thinly sliced as well. The trick to  make this easy with carrots is first to shave them lengthwise with a cheese grater and then julienne them. Cook for about 5 minutes and then add prawns. Continue cooking for a couple of minutes until the prawns are done and then add noodles you've boiled (cut into shorter strips if you wants) and serve.

You could use any old veg you have lying around and this is equally good made with chicken!




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